You are comfortable in your job and you are doing it well. You might be in the habit of arriving a little early and leaving a little late, you put your heart and soul into your job. You currently have domestic chores balanced between you and your partner, everything is running smoothly (Well, as smoothly as it can).
You Decide to Start a Family. Surely It Will Not Change Your Life That Much?
While on maternity leave you slip into the habit of doing all the washing, cleaning, cooking etc.. It’s fine, you don’t mind doing it, you are not working (!).
But, how do you get the balance right if or when you return to work? If I know one thing, it’s that all the working parents I know say they never have enough time. They constantly feel like they are having to juggle getting just enough done at work with being home on time to collect the kids from school and then get everything else done at home.
So, How Do You Get the Balance Right and Have a Happy Life?
It sounds simple and maybe a little patronising, but communication is the key.
Be open and honest with you partner from the start. Discuss the jobs that need doing around the house and for the children and then sort out who can do what on which days. It sounds business like but it will save you feeling like you don’t know what is going on or having any animosity building up between you and your partner.
Talk to your boss about flexible working hours. Can you work it so that you can share school drop offs and pick-ups with your partner? That way you will keep some contact with school and you can share the rushing around.
Set a time limit on how much work work you do on your days off. There is no point working part-time if you are going to spend your days off catching up on things you didn’t have time to do when you were in the office.
Get organised, would it help to plan a menu in advance and maybe do your food shopping online. Can you batch-cook a few meals to be put in the freezer for those really busy days?
Finally, make time to be a couple. Life can be so hectic when you work and have a family that it ends up being all business. Find time once in a while to go out on a date.
So, every new chapter in our lives comes with its own challenges. It is all about finding out how to make it work for you and your family. Why not sit down with a glass of wine, your family calendar, some paper and marker pens and get chatting. Oh, and don’t forget to plan that date night too!
Here is a great article on the benefits of using a rota. Parenting: How setting up a rota system can help family harmony